CYMA mechanical circa 1948 - With the back off.

Thread: CYMA mechanical circa 1948 - With the back off.

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  1. #1
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    CYMA mechanical circa 1948 - With the back off.

    Hello all, I recently came across my late father's CYMA watch. From the engraving on the back he must have been given it for his 21st birthday in 1948.

    It does work, but I daren't wind it too much before I have it looked at by a watchmaker. It probably hasn't been wound in 30+ years.

    I'm really hoping for any info on the watch I can get. I have googled the brand & found a few similar models, but nothing quite the same.

    I'll try to post some pics, my photography skills are quite poor & it really doesn't look as bad in real life as it does when enlarged.

    Thanks in advance for any help you can give!
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    Last edited by DonMI6; December 5th, 2010 at 06:44.

  2. #2
    Member Eeeb's Avatar
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    Re: CYMA mechanical circa 1948 - Hoping for some info!

    Cyma is a well known quality manufacturer. They are part of the Swatch Group, I believe. Service should be no problem.

    Your dad really loved this watch judging by the wear. The design is consistent with the dating. A wonderful heirloom. You are fortunate to have it. A service, light polish, and a new crystal and you should be in business! Movement pics will of course generate more comment.

    Thanks for posting and welcome to WUS Vintage where, like fine wine, watches get better with age.
    "Forever is composed of nows." - Emily Dickinson

    "The watch has to be surrounded by a history.
    You need more than just a great design. You need to create an atmosphere around the product.
    Who is the company behind it? Why are they using this material?
    People need to be able to identify the watch with themselves. It's based on emotion." - Ralph Furter

    ...that's just my opinion and I've been wrong before and will be again and might be now!

  3. #3
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    Re: CYMA mechanical circa 1948 - Hoping for some info!

    Quote Originally Posted by Eeeb View Post
    ...Movement pics will of course generate more comment...
    Thanks for the tip (& the welcome). I'll try adding some.
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  5. #4
    Member Marrick's Avatar
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    Re: CYMA mechanical circa 1948 - Hoping for some info!

    Probably from the Cyma 30 series. See

    bidfun-db Cyma_030: Cyma 030

    The case is by Handley. It was common for movement makers to outsource the casemaking. I don't know anything about Handley. There are references to it being an English firm but most examples seem to crop up in Australia. For example see:

    Mechanical Watch Lovefest - Page 12 - MacTalk Forums

    They made some cases for Rolex. The movement seems to be corrosion free and in nice order.
    Everybody is ignorant, only on different subjects."

    Will Rogers (1879 - 1935)


    Please don't PM me to ask for a valuation - I won't attempt one.

  6. #5
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    Re: CYMA mechanical circa 1948 - Hoping for some info!

    Hi -

    That's actually a very, very interesting movement.

    First of all, notice how large the balance wheel is (that's the wheel with the little weights on the outside at the 9 o'clock position in the second photo). A larger balance wheel, will generally give you a smoother beat, as a larger mass shows greater inertia and this results in a beat that, while slower, is more consistent.

    Second, the balance is directly opposite the crown, which is a fairly unusual movement layout. Many movements have the balance wheel closer to the six than the nine, a compromise designed to minimize the size of the gear train. This is more elegant (at least in my opinion).

    Cyma are underrated and underpriced watches. One of my grails is to find one of their military watches at a price I can pay. I've got 4 right now, including one of their elegant tank watches from the 1930s with a lovely full-plate movement...

    The current Cyma has virtually nothing to do with the vintage Cymas.

    JohnF
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    Re: CYMA mechanical circa 1948 - With the back off.

    Very nice watch indeed, what a terrific heirloom to have.

    "one of their elegant tank watches from the 1930s with a lovely full-plate movement"
    John, that sounds wonderful, please do share some photos at some point!

  8. #7
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    Re: CYMA mechanical circa 1948 - With the back off.

    Hi -

    Old and bad picture, but serves the purpose...



    Cyma 334 movement.

    PS: At some point I'll re do this one with proper macro gear, but this'll have to do. This movement is also made as a 3/4 plate movement, but this is a full-plate treatment...lovely geneva stripes. I bought the watch just for this movement, as the case is horrible. Dial and hands are okay...deserves a better fate than languishing around, but it's so darn small, and finding a new case is a major hurdle...

    PPS: Just found this one as well: the 335 movement, which is the 3/4 plate version. Obviously not my picture, but serves to show the difference...

    Last edited by JohnF; December 5th, 2010 at 16:46. Reason: PS + PPS
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  9. #8
    Member radger's Avatar
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    Re: CYMA mechanical circa 1948 - With the back off.

    Nice old watch John .F, I'm not familiar with the 'modern' terminology which
    would call this a 'full plate' movement.
    I'm old enough to remember when a 'full plate' movement described a watch
    where the balance was fitted above the plate.

    Didn't Cyma at one time have something to do with Tavannes?

  10. #9
    Moderator Public Forum John MS's Avatar
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    Re: CYMA mechanical circa 1948 - Hoping for some info!

    Quote Originally Posted by JohnF View Post
    Hi -

    That's actually a very, very interesting movement.

    First of all, notice how large the balance wheel is (that's the wheel with the little weights on the outside at the 9 o'clock position in the second photo). A larger balance wheel, will generally give you a smoother beat, as a larger mass shows greater inertia and this results in a beat that, while slower, is more consistent.

    Second, the balance is directly opposite the crown, which is a fairly unusual movement layout. Many movements have the balance wheel closer to the six than the nine, a compromise designed to minimize the size of the gear train. This is more elegant (at least in my opinion).

    Cyma are underrated and underpriced watches. One of my grails is to find one of their military watches at a price I can pay. I've got 4 right now, including one of their elegant tank watches from the 1930s with a lovely full-plate movement...

    The current Cyma has virtually nothing to do with the vintage Cymas.

    JohnF
    Pardon the delayed response. Yes, I agree completely. Vintage Cyma watches are certainly underrated and use interesting movements. The Navy Star Deluxe below uses an R488.2 movement that is essentially identical in layout to the 030 although somewhat more functional in design. I wonder if the balance placement wasn't in-part dictated by the size of the balance as well as allowing the movement to be used for center and sub-seconds display.

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  11. #10
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    Re: CYMA mechanical circa 1948 - Hoping for some info!

    Hi John,

    the Cyma 488 is a late revival of the famous Pleiades chronometer:
    bidfun-db Cyma_10_Pleiades: Cyma 10 Pleiades

    Both have a unique train layout, reducing the volume of the movement without
    reducing the sizes of the important components. A must for collectors.

    Regards, Roland Ranfft

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